Mar 9, 2020
Last January, the Gay Lea Foundation announced a $20,000 grant to Feed Ontario (then called the Ontario Association of Food Banks), which would be used to fund the charity’s 2019 Capacity Building Program, a granting program that provides food banks in the province with funding to grow their capacity to accept, store, and distribute fresh food to adults and children living with hunger.
By the end of the year, six food banks had received grants for a total of $18,000, enabling them to increase refrigeration capacity, replace faltering refrigerators or improve their facilities and equipment – important improvements, given that nearly 70% of the food distributed by Feed Ontario is fresh or frozen. The remaining $2,000 was used by Feed Ontario to increase their distribution of fresh and frozen food to the communities who need it most, including the food banks whose improved capacity through the program meant they could now accept more fresh and frozen food.
Read on to learn more about how the grant from the Gay Lea Foundation enabled these six food banks to collectively better serve more than 14,410 clients facing hunger in Ontario and how our continuing partnership with Feed Ontario is helping change lives and build healthier communities across the province!
FOOD BANK: SALVATION ARMY HUNTSVILLE FOOD BANK
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: 380
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Purchase of freezer and two utility carts
IMPACT: Increased freezer capacity for fresh and frozen food donations by 560 lbs and improved ease, time and efficiency for volunteers moving food.
FOOD BANK: THE AGAPE CENTRE, CORNWALL
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: $1,200
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Air conditioner repair and purchase of trolley carts
IMPACT: Better temperature control has increased shelf-life on non-refrigerated perishables, such as bread, while trolleys have increased food transportation efficiency and saved volunteer hours.
FOOD BANK: CENTRAL FOOD NETWORK, WILBEFORCE
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: 120
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Purchase of fridge/freezer units
IMPACT: Increased refrigeration capacity for fresh produce (from 0 to 30 lbs) has enabled more fresh food to be donated and shared.
FOOD BANK: HAMILTON FOOD SHARE, HAMILTON
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: 12,600
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Loading dock repair, freezer/cooler monitoring system
IMPACT: Enables the food bank to maintain appropriate, safe cold chain storage for fresh food.
FOOD BANK: HASTINGS ROSENEATH MINISTERIAL FOOD BANK, HASTINGS
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: 60
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Purchase of fridge/freezer unit
IMPACT: Enables the food bank to stock and distribute fresh produce, which they were previously unable to do.
FOOD BANK: WATERFORD & DISTRICT FOOD CUPBOARD
PEOPLE SERVED PER MONTH: 50
CAPACITY IMPROVEMENTS: Purchase of commercial fridge
IMPACT: Increased capacity to serve fresh fruit and vegetables and provides new opportunity to supply dairy products on a weekly basis.
About Feed Ontario
From securing fresh and healthy food sources, to driving change through policy research and innovative programming, Feed Ontario unites food banks, industry partners and local communities in their work to end hunger and poverty.
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